NIU Coffee Fund

NIU investigations
12:06 pm
Fri June 21, 2013

'Coffee Fund' Case Comes To An End

Kenneth Pugh

The Northern Illinois University “coffee fund” investigation has come to an end with a plea agreement this week with the last of nine original defendants.

Kenneth Pugh, 57, director of NIU’s Materials Management department, was one of three supervisors who pled guilty to a misdemeanor for their roles in the case.

Charges against six of the nine NIU employees charged with felonies were dismissed. Seven of the defendants have returned to work at NIU and one more is expected to return soon. One retired before charges were filed

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Coffee Fund
9:41 am
Mon March 25, 2013

Charges Dropped Against Another NIU Employee

Credit Susan Stephens

DeKalb County State’s Attorney Richard Schmack has dismissed all charges against Susan Zahm in connection to the ‘NIU Coffee Fund’ case.

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5:28 am
Thu February 28, 2013

NIU Pays Out 200K In Paid Leave Costs

Credit NIU

Police Chief Don Grady continued to draw a salary after he was placed on leave in November.  His salary at the time was around $205,987.92. Grady and another officer were accused of withholding evidence in a sexual assault case. The charges for that case were initially dropped, but have been re-filed.

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NIU Coffee Fund
10:02 am
Wed January 9, 2013

Six "Coffee Fund" Employees Return to Work

Credit NIU

Five of the employees returned to work last Wednesday, another returned on Monday. According to university spokesman Paul Palian, NIU's Office of the General Counsel has reviewed the records, university policies and reports related to the employees who were placed on paid administrative leave during the police investigation of the coffee fund case.

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8:16 pm
Fri November 9, 2012

NIU President Peters Explains Silence, Urges Unity

Northern Illinois University President John Peters
Credit NIU Media Services

Northern Illinois University President John Peters explains his silence on several controversial matters and asks the campus to stick together. 

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NIU Investigation
6:46 pm
Fri October 26, 2012

First Court Appearances In NIU Coffee Fund Probe

Friday was the first court appearance for six of the Northern Illinois University employees accused of theft in a case known as “the coffee fund.”

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NIU Coffee Fund
10:12 am
Thu October 25, 2012

First Court Date Friday for Six NIU Employees

Credit NIU

Six of the eight current NIU employees charged as part of an ongoing investigation into an unauthorized account are scheduled to appear for a status hearing Friday afternoon in a DeKalb County courtroom. 

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6:35 am
Thu October 25, 2012

Local Officials Question Transparency Efforts At NIU

Credit Susan Stephens / WNIJ

The coffee-fund investigation at Northern Illinois University is now playing out in the court system. The school recently placed eight employees on administrative leave.

Those employees were charged in connection with a secret bank account. The probe was launched over the summer after the fund’s existence was revealed in a local news report. It came on the heels of separation agreements for two former administrators. The university has issued public statements about recent events, but some in the community question whether the school is being open enough with the public.

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NIU coffee fund
6:24 pm
Mon October 22, 2012

'Coffee Fund' Latest: Eight NIU Employees Placed on Administrative Leave


Northern Illinois University has placed eight employees facing charges as a result of the 'coffee fund' investigation on administrative leave.  NIU said the action came "after a thorough review of state civil service statutes and regulations as well as university employment policies and practices."  The employees will continue to draw their regular salary while investigations into the fund by the NIU Police Department and the DeKalb County State's Attorney continue.

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